I think we’re all a bit in shock that Craig Murray is actually going to jail, even though we’ve known for a few weeks that this moment was likely to arrive. Some will say “well, he’s not above the law, you know”, but what’s truly staggering about this case is that we’ve discovered that equality before the law does not actually apply: bloggers are held to a higher standard, and are dealt with more punitively, than mainstream journalists. Lady Dorrian ludicrously justified that novel principle with reference to the IPSO code – an entirely voluntary code which has no legal standing that I’m aware of and that is rather selectively enforced, to put it politely.
As for Lady Dorrian’s cheerleaders, probably the most reprehensible thing I’ve seen is a relatively well-known person within the SNP who indicated that she wanted Craig in jail, because if he was sentenced to community service he’d worm his way out of it due to his health conditions. Either the implication is that his health conditions are fake (in which case doctors are lying about them for some unspecified reason) or that she would rather Craig’s life was put at risk than see him escape punishment. Never again can that individual claim to be a progressive: she has betrayed a repugnant right-wing belief system that is incompatible with restorative justice or rehabilitation, or indeed common decency.
* * *
If you’re a fellow member of the Alba Party, you’ll have received a flurry of emails over the last few days about registration for the forthcoming conference, the election of office bearers, and a consultation about the party’s draft constitution. A few people have messaged me to ask whether I’ll be going to conference, and one person also wanted to know if I’d have any objection if he nominated me for one of the ordinary places on the National Executive Committee. I certainly would very much like to go to conference – the only snag is that I have a lot of contact with a vulnerable person, so I’ll have to see how risky the virus situation seems at the time. But I plan to register to give myself the option of going if it’s safe. And I don’t have any objection if anyone genuinely wants to nominate me for the NEC – other than the inevitable mild embarrassment when only one person actually does it! (Ten nominations are required to make the ballot.) I’ll probably send in nominations of my own for some of the various positions, but as the deadline is a few days away I’ll give myself time to have a proper think about who to nominate. Alex Salmond for leader is a no-brainer if he wants to continue, but there are several possibilities for depute leader: Kenny MacAskill, Neale Hanvey and Chris McEleny would seem to be the obvious candidates, but there may be a feeling that a woman should take the role if the leader is male.
* * *
Poll fundraising: We’ll get there eventually! I’m still fundraising for the poll via the Scot Goes Pop general fundraiser – if you’d like to donate please click HERE. A million thanks for all the generous donations so far.